Bowling first after winning the toss, Bangalore restricted UP Warriorz to 135 in 19.3 overs. Pacer Ellyse Perry picked up 3/16, dismissing Grace Harris (46), Deepti Sharma (22) and Shweta Sehrawat (6). Earlier, Sophie Devine got Bangalore off to a terrific start, dismissing Devika Vaidya (0) and UP skipper Alyssa Healy (1) in the first over. Megan Schutt chipped in by sending back Tahlia McGrath for 3. UP were four down when Asha Shobana forced a bad stroke from Kiran Navgire (22).
Harris once again top-scored for UP Warriorz. Her 46 came off 32 balls and included five fours and two sixes. Harris and Deepti Sharma (22) added 69 runs for the sixth wicket. Devine finished with figures of 2/23, while Shobana finished with 2/27.
Chasing 136, RCB lost 60/4. Devine took on Harris and hit her for a six and two fours in the first over. However, she was also dismissed in the same over, looking for another big hit. Bangalore captain Smriti Mandhana registered another failure. She was bowled without scoring by Deepti Sharma as she went for a premeditated sweep.
Perry and Heather Knight perished for 10 and 24 respectively. However, Kanika Ahuja (46 off 30) and Richa Ghosh (31 not out off 32) added 60 runs for the fifth wicket to pave the way for Bangalore’s maiden win in WPL 2023. Kanika hit eight fours and a six, while Ghosh struck three fours and a maximum.
Reflecting on the morale-boosting win, RCB captain Mandhana said the dugout was a bit tense after they lost a couple of wickets in quick succession in the middle. She added, “The way Kanika and Richa played was brilliant. Kanika in particular, really proud of her. Really excited to see her bat, the approach she has. She is a 360 degree player, who isn't the most common in Indian cricket. Really impressed with her and the belief she has.”
Mandhana also thanked the fans for backing the team despite the franchise not producing the desired results. The RCB skipper concluded, “Even when we have not been in great positions, the crowd keep chanting for us. Really happy for this loyal support base, not a lot of teams will have supporters turn up in such high numbers after losing five games.”
--By A Cricket Correspondent